Password options for your new BlackBerry Z3

By James Richardson on 26 Jul 2014 02:49 pm EDT

Being BlackBerry 10 users; chances are we are all a little security conscious, particularly if you use your device for business. God forbid you lose your trusty BlackBerry Z3, but if you do you'll want to ensure you have a password set up on it so whoever finds it, or steals, won't have access to your personal information.

Like all BlackBerry 10 handsets, the Z3 has a couple of options when it comes to which sort of password you use.

First up is the simple numeric one where you just key in the number combination you have chosen. Although most smartphone users rely on this option it isn't 100% secure as you can easily observe a friend, or stranger, unlocking their phone.

To set up the standard password follow these steps:

  • From the home screen, swipe down from the top and tap on Settings

  • Scroll down to and tap on Security and Privacy > Device Password

  • Toggle the button for Picture Password to On

  • At the Device Lock prompt, input your device password

So BlackBerry came up with an even more secure way of doing things - Picture Password. Here you will need to drag a pre-chosen number to a specific part of the Z3's screen in order to unlock the device. The set up process is nice and straightforward and you can't really go wrong. The chances of someone guessing your unlock code now is pretty much impossible as Kevin put to the test some time back.

Follow these on-screen directions to setup your picture and number combination:

  • Choose an image from the default gallery or your picture library

  • Select a number (0-9) from the grid

  • The number selected will be highlighted on the display. Drag this number to a specific point on the picture

  • You have now setup your picture password unlock combination

  • You will be asked to confirm your selections by re-entering your picture password combination

So your BlackBerry Z3 is super secure in terms of messaging, but it's also got the highest level of security required just to unlock it - some great reassurance.

Reader comments

Password options for your new BlackBerry Z3


I've been meaning to try picture password. Reading this was a good reminder. Thanks!

Posted while peeking and flowing on my incredible BBQ10! 

Meh I prefer the simple passcode with 4 digits. I love the pattern passes from android though. BlackBerry 10 lock screen is very boring for me.

Don't reply just to give hate.

Posted via CB10

Hackers love pattern lock too. I can see the pattern via the smudges on all of my friends' androids, lol. But whatever, it's more "convenient" and it's the "cool" way to do it so they will use it...

Posted without the aid of AutoCorrect with my physical keyboard via CB10

Last weekend I was out on a date with a girl who had 9900. I handed the girl my phone and said "I'll give you 5 tries to guess the pwd". It's set to a picture of my dog. The top right edge of 5 had to touch a random dot in the background. She had never seen me unlock it before.

She opened it in 4 tries. The first two she tried to figure out how to move the numbers on the screen then she just randomly moved numbers around and let go.

I still think it's a fairly secure method of locking the phone and considering how much I use the device it's quick and easy for me. However, it's not fool proof.

Posted via CB10

They could get it by mistake but won't be able to open it up again when it locks again and by the pattern once you see it you could open it however many times you want

Loving my Q10 and Z10 and waiting to try out my Z30 when I get home next week

Yeah I guess pattern lock isn't that secure... I'll stick with my simple passcode then hehe. The picture unlock is very nice too and fools many people who think it is a pattern lock.

Posted via CB10

We've discussed this at the forums. Picture Password is as strong as creative and intelligent the owner is. If someone picks very obvious spots, it's not hard to guess the combination. The only weak spot is that sometimes people just get lucky by randomly moving the grid. But otherwise I think it's at least safer than the usual 4 digit simple password, because when you unlock your phone on public places, people can easily see what code you are entering, with Picture Password they have very little to no chance, especially when they have no idea how it works.

Posted via CB10

Picture password is good, just don't make it too easy or the girlfriend will figure it out. Nothing to hide, but still figured it out.

I can't see how anyone can figure out a picture password. I think it's because people think they have to put their figure right on the number to move it to the spot. You can put your finger anywhere on the screen to move the numbers and when your combination aligns just let go.

Someone would have to watch multiple times to perhaps figure it out...


Posted via CB10

Yes, the "marbles" template is especially bad for that.

More easily "hacked", unless you choose a position which is not center of a marble, but a space between two or three. Then it's excellent...

If they choose full alphabet or even alphanumeric, then then chance of accidental unlocks would be even less, but you'd have to swipe and move it a bit to find your number / letter.

Pasted via CB chen

Picture password is the best

Loving my Q10 and Z10 and waiting to try out my Z30 when I get home next week

Ya I'm a fan of picture password. Quick easy single hand operation. As said above android's pattern one is cool but easy to figure out watching by watching and to make one more difficult to figure out you pretty much need to make it complicated enough that you require one hand to hold the phone while the other hand does the pattern.

Posted via CB10

I actually didn't find it that convenient at times. Because the numbers randomized (which is great for security) you’re never sure where your number will show up. More than once I've spotted my number and began to navigate with my thumb only to run off the edge of the phone.....and would have to start again.
It was just consistently quicker for me using the 4 number code.

Posted via CB10

My wife's previous iPhone had been hacked so many times by my 6 years old I won't even trust a 4 digits password.

Posted via CB10

Just keep in mind to make sure your "main" or " alphanumeric " is solidified in your mind because after months of using pic password, you may get prompted to TYPE your device password. If you have forgotten it,'s wipe time! Better have a good backup although backup will prompt for device pword as well if using Link.

... shot from my z30

I was going to suggest Password Keeper, until I recognized the logical fallacy. Yup, It's a pickle!

From my Neutrino Powered Z10

I use Enpass which syncs across platforms. Really works well to have your passwords on your laptop and BlackBerry.


Posted via CB10

Enpass would not help if your phone is locked down due to failed password attempts.

Posted via CB10

I think the point is if you fail five times with the picture it reverts to the password. At that point if you had forgot your password you'd look it up on your PC or Mac.


Posted via CB10

I love the picture password, I think it's the best considering someone can be shoulder surfing and still not figure out your password. Good stuff.

.3247 good and Carling.

Picture password is amazing. A good picture goes a long way though.. as I've seen here time and time again with people claiming their friends or spouse can figure it out 5/5 tries or such, I always remind myself : always expect an some people the safest things easy to unlock

Posted via CB10

Yep. And change the picture / number used regularly. I change mine every week or two. Or sooner if I think someone guessed it....

Posted via CB10

Had a friend who giving up trying to unlock my phone...picture password is so awesome and secure...simple and easy to use

Posted via CB10

This is a really nice concept, I've heard of it a while back. What is the first version of BB10 it's available on?

I use pic password but I found a little bug. When you fail pic password many times it will ask to write blackberry then your password. When you write your password it shows the password you are writing instead of **** so you are showing your password to everyone who can be looking at screen.

Posted via CB10

It is not a bug. It shows you the password so that you know what are the actual passwords being entered, you would notice the eye icon if the right is highlighted in blue.

If you want to hide them, just click the eye icon again so that it would hide your password.

Posted via CB10

Picture password is a great innovation.

1. I chose a number that has no significance to my life, and
2. A tiniest non-intuitive insignificant empty space on the picture as a pair with it.
3. The grid size constantly changes from entry to entry.
4. The number pattern on the grid is also pseudo-random.
5. I also randomly choose a drag point for the number grid.
6. The spot of intersection is quite precise.
7. The password entry process happens with 1 second after the grid appears.
8. I regularly change up the picture and the number.

If those 8 factors could easily be expressed in statistics, there would be a miniscule chance of anyone ever decoding my picture password, even by looking over my shoulder.

If it's a case of guessing, too many tries and the numeric password must be entered, presenting another obstacle.

If perchance someone accidently aligns the 2 factors once without decoding the combination, the statistical chances of successively repeating that feat exponentially decreases.

I don't expect that my picture password will be broken.

Q10  The Other Crackberry Pirate  Z30

I love picture password! It's very clever. I like how it has different scales of numbers too. Sometimes more, sometimes less, and fast!

Posted via CB10

On a Z10, the image password went crazy after several weeks of use, my phone was locked, lost all the data. Fortunately, did back ups.
But happened on official released OS, all of the sudden.
Back ups are a must.

Posted via CB10

Just a question : Z3 was, according to official BlackBerry statement, designed for emerging markets, later to be updated with LTE and other upgrades and then released worldwide.
Well, seems they still go as the wind blows...the first version available for US and Canada...
M.Chen, you don't act like you speak.

Posted via CB10

I found picture password a bit awkward as you have to align numbers exactly, i had trouble getting into my phone a number of times .also on my old BlackBerry 7 curve the email. BlackBerry. Com account made me use capital and small letters in password. When i got Q5 then Z10 i was unable to link up my email as i could not recreate password properly in 10 trys so had to create new BlackBerry id Big hassle!

Tapping and flicking on my Zed 10

My Z10 is company supplied with policy enforced password usage. I have to use 5 characters or more password and type it into the normal keyboard. I'd love to use a big button keypad or some picture password approach.

Posted via CB10

I use the picture password. My Android friends would like it too.

The only problem is that un facts, it takes a long time to unlock the device that way.

1 Read the matrix to find your number
2 move it

The first step takes too long for me.

Posted via CB10

Hi Crackberry. Why ma phone (Z3) after update BBOS 10.3 developer. No gallery no music no file manager

Posted via CB10